Bonapaw has been invited to participate in the $2-million Dubai Golden Shaheen (UAE-I) on the Dubai World Cup (UAE-I) undercard. The Golden Shaheen will be run two races prior to the World Cup on March 23 on a straight six-furlong course at Nad Al Sheba. His connections said Bonapaw is "80 percent" to make the trip.
"We've called for plane reservations," co-owner Jimmy Richard said Thursday. "We faxed the vet records and we're sittin' on go."
Six-year-old Bonapaw, a $6,500 yearling purchase, has won 13 of 28 career starts, including six of 11 starts since February of last year. The Howard Alonzo trainee earned his only career graded stakes win during that span, when he won the Count Fleet Sprint Handicap (gr. III) in April at Oaklawn Park.
Bonapaw (Sabona -- Pawlova, by Nijinsky II) will prep for the big race in Sunday's $100,000 Taylor's Special at Fair Grounds. Regular rider Gerald Melancon will be in the irons Sunday and will likely make the trip to Dubai.
"This invitation is a great honor," Richard said. "I'm a guy that doesn't like too much change, but how can you pass it up?"